Tuesday, September 03, 2013

September 3, 2013

Hey family!

Okay first of all before anything, the knife thing. It was an alley with people sitting outside and everything like people’s front doors. You can drive cars in. We were contacting a referral. Then the guy said something and I couldn’t hear him and I asked him if he lived here. He was drunk and walked up to us and said beat it, he didn’t actually pull out the knife. Then the other guy with him told us to leave it wasn’t as bad as it sounds. I am being careful and smart so don’t worry. I know I am not invincible.
(Background info on this: Josh told Gavin that someone pulled a knife on him, he didn’t want me to find out but of course I ended up finding out and freaked out so Josh is clarifying what happened :) It sounded a lot worse in the email he sent to Gavin last week!)

This week has been so hot! 100's all week! Our apartment is soo hot, no AC. But we’re doing fine. We each buy a case of water every week, our tap water tastes gross. Everyone always gives us water at the door. We had a very good week, we now have 5 baptismal dates! 4 on the 22nd of September. But we ended the week frustrated because no one came to church. So we are gonna try harder this week to get them to church. Yesterday was a holiday so I was unable to e-mail, all the libraries were closed. We went and played sports all afternoon so it was super fun, volleyball is actually sweet.  Today I am on exchanges in my area so it’s good, I get to learn alot from other the other Elders.

So about the backpack am I sending it home or not? I have postcards and some sick stickers for all of you too. When does the bag come?

On Saturday I got to go on exchanges with the Zone leaders, I went into their area, in La Puente and all El Monte. I got to drive all day too so I loved it. It’s been good we talked about how on your mission you get to see how the Gospel applies to people’s situations and get edified yourself. Which prepares you for your life and experiences. Everyone we teach has different needs and challenges. And all can be helped by the Atonement. 

On Friday we taught Luis and his mom Josefina. We were about to watch the restoration DVD and the lesson completely changed when she brought up a doubt with baptism. It’s hard for these people to change because for many generations they have their religion, mostly catholic. Anyways she has a bad feeling about it but has such a good feeling when we come over. The lesson really was teaching more about baptism and the atonement and testifying to her, it was forsure my most spiritual lesson I have ever had. It was crazy, I could feel so strong how much heavenly father loves her and wants her to come into the fold. At the end of the lesson she prayed for the new date and if the book of Mormon is true. I know that as she continues to ask and shows her desire to know that God will answer.
My love is really growing for the people here, especially as my Spanish is getting better.

In answer to cars and I-pads, they are taking out alot of our cars, alot of biking and bus passes. And I think we are getting i pads in October, it will feel weird but be such a good tool to use. Latinos love videos. It’s funny because the kids here understand both Spanish and English, but usually speak to their parents in English. The parents understand both pretty much but only really speak Spanish. So the conversations between parents and kids are so funny. The parents speak in Spanish to them and the kids answer in English and it’s all normal.

I’ve been really enjoying my personal studies in the morning, my whole view on prophets and the Book of Mormon has completely changed. Its crazy I can’t get enough of it as odd as it sounds. In our area I think we need to work with the members better, we are trying to set up activities and temple trips which I think will help. There is less than 2 weeks before transfer calls, I could leave, who knows. I am really enjoying it here though. My companion is super good, we work together well, and we spend alot of time with the zone leaders and they’re super fun. But I will go wherever the Lord needs me, hopefully LA haha just kidding. I will send the sweet stickers and post cards!

Thanks for all the emails and pictures I hope everything goes well with school!
Love Elder Garry

Tuesday August 27, 2013

Hey family! 

I loved all the pics dad sent, looks like crypt was fun, it doesn’t look like it was very hot though. Its crazy we just did that hike at the end of last summer. Those Galloway pics are sweet too, did you guys do it all on your own? 

This last week was good! Last week we helped Hermano (brother) Gomez with his house. That returning less active family. He is on fire! We are teaching his bro in law and son and then brother Gomez oldest daughter and boy friend who aren’t members and he has referrals for us. But anyways he has a giant tree that covers his house so we helped him trim it and sweep his roof, it was super hot but good to help him out. It took us like 2 and half hours! The whole family came to church too!

Oh I found out that Snoop Dogg lives in my mission, in a place called chino. I guess he has a big gate and a basketball hoop with a Gold Rim, pretty classic.

On Tuesday we went on exchanges and I was in our area. We had a lesson with one of our investigators Maria (everyone Latina is named Maria). And I had no idea what to teach her. I had been praying alot and we went in and she hadn’t read so we read ch 1 in Nephi and explained more about why we have the book of Mormon. Then it all just came, all in Spanish too, and we talked about the Holy Ghost and what it feels like and how it is how we are able to know truth. We than set a baptismal date for Sept 29th which was sweet it all just happened I had no idea what I was saying. Crazy!
I really do know that when we do everything we can then God will help us with what he would have us do. 

God is like a Boss in a way. You don’t receive a paycheck before you work right. After our work or trial of our faith comes the blessings. This is a concept we have been teaching our investigators. It applies to all of us, if we want a testimony we need to work for it, or an answer to a prayer.

Yesterday was Zone Conference, it was super good! President Beccera just blows our minds every time, I think the greatest teacher I have met. He talked about how there is a new temple video, and we are going in October and he says how amazing it is. He’s like I just want to go to the temple everyday now. So all the missionaries are super excited to go. We did a bunch of role-plays and talked about how to teach Latino people. Before we came were supposed to read Jacob 5 and our Patriarchal Blessings and look for why we were called at this time. I found tons of things in mine that is really strengthening my testimony. 
At the end he was testifying of our calling and how we were reserved and how we need to hasten the work. Very powerful moment. Very spiritual meeting. After zone conference we all just wanted to go find more people to teach!

This month I am really focusing on understanding the Doc of Christ better and relying on the spirit. And I have seen a change so far. Our planning is different and our prayers for it as well, its all Gods work. 

Today I think a member is taking us to arbys in Azua haha I guess the zone leaders really want to go. I would rather take advantage of the ride and go hiking but one day. I guess there are some sweet hikes here.

I am so grateful to be here in this mission have these experiences. Before I would have good ones like at church or seminary but those feelings would go away and it was apart of me all the time. Here it happens all the time and my motivation from doing missionary work is changing from out of duty to love. 

I hope you all have a super good week, last week of summer right? 
Love Elder Garry

P.s here is some pics of us eating at bills, every Thursday! Don’t worry that morning we ran 3 miles!

Me with the free pop

Me making fun of elder Ingram